Hoekstra book gets All-Star treatment on MiLB.com!

MiLB.com, the official site of Minor League Baseball, calls Hoekstra's Cougars and Snappers and Loons, Oh My!, A Midwest League Field Guide an "irreverent travelogue" of league and its characters. Read the full article, Hoekstra takes the field in the Midwest, here!

Cubbie Blues Podcast

Cubbie Blues editor Donald Evans was interviewed by WGN 720 radio's Don Digilio on the eve of the Chicago Tribune Printers Row Lit Fest. Download and listen to the uncut MP3 podcast of that interview.

Sign the Petition!

Holy Cow! Can't Miss Press is a proud sponsor of The Common Fan Sings, a grassroots effort launched by Dave Cihla (co-creator of the Shawon-O-Meter) to let a regular Cubs fan sing "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" during the 7th inning stretch at Wrigley Field. Sign the petition to let Dave and other deserving Cubs fans carry on the tradition started by Harry Caray. Then view the video of Dave and some of his supporters singing "Happy Birthday" to Shawon at the Shawon-O-MeetUp at Murphy's Bleachers

Upcoming Events

SUNDAY, AUGUST 16, 5:30 - 8:30 p.m.: Publication Party for Cougars and Snappers and Loons (Oh My!) A Midwest League Field Guideby Dave Hoekstra, Sheffields (3258 N. Sheffield, Chicago). Dave's new release is a joyful journey through minor league baseball. As minor league baseball owner Mike Veeck says, "Nobody has seen more of the heart and soul of the Midwest than the Johnny Appleseed of Minor League Baseball." Free hors d'ouevres 5:30-6:30 p.m., cash bar, drink specials (312 Urban Wheat Ale, tequila).

Past Events

SUNDAY, DECEMBER 14, 2008, 10 a.m. - noon: FIRST OFFICIAL BOOK SIGNING, ORIGINAL BILLY GOAT TAVERN & GRILL (430 N. Michigan Ave., Lower Level, Chicago, IL 60611, 312.222-1525): What a perfect place to start. U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin called the Billy Goat "a national institution." It's our favorite subterranean saloon and eatery. From table to table and across every barstool, there's an echo of "wait till next year." It's a mantra all diehard Cub fans know by heart. Sammy Sianis, who owns the Billy Goat, knows it well, too. His uncle, the orginal owner, was famous for trying to bring a goat into Wrigley Field during the 1945 World Series. The Cubs haven't been back to the Fall Classic since and the longer they go without a title (it's at 100 years and counting) the more the legendary Curse of the Billy Goat grows. Chicago's preeminent journalist Rick Kogan (A Chicago Tavern: A Goat, a Curse, and the American Dream) and Judy Royko, widow of legendary columnist Mike Royko, will be on hand to sign books, as will book contributors Mary Beth Hoerner, Donald Evans and Randy Richardson. WXRT's Lin Brehmer will also make a brief appearance. One of Frank Sinatra's personal favorites, legendary Chicago saloon singer Jimmy Damon, will sing Take Me Out to the Ball Game. All book buyers will get a complimentary cheeseburger from the Billy Goat. Books and burgers - does it get any better than that?

SUNDAY, DECEMBER 14, 2008, 7-10 p.m.: BOOK RELEASE PARTY, SHEFFIELD’S (3258 N. SHEFFIELD AVE., CHICAGO, IL 60657, 773.281.4989): Help us celebrate the official release. There will be a free appetizer buffet, beer and drink specials, and contributor Dave Hoekstra will spin his eclectic Cubs music collection as guest DJ. Other contributors such as Sara Paretsky, James Finn Garner,Don De Grazia, Jonathan Eig, Stuart Shea, Rick Kaempfer, Bill Hillmann, Ric Hess, Christine Sneed, Julia Borcherts, Mary Beth Hoerner, Robert Goldsborough, Donald Evans and Randy Richardson will also be there to sign copies of the book.At 8:30, publisher George Rawlinson will lead a toast and there will be s special guest appearances and comments by Pat Brickhouse,Shawon-O-Meter creator Dave Cihla, "Radio Ron" Walerowicz and others.

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 18, 2008, 7-10 p.m.: SUBURBAN BOOK RELEASE PARTY,ELGIN PUBLIC HOUSE(219E.CHICAGO ST., ELGIN, IL 60120, 847.468.8810): Meet and get books signed by former major leaguers Gene Hiser - Chicago Cubs(1971-75); Bill Campbell - Minnesota Twins (1973-76), Boston Red Sox (1977-81), Chicago Cubs (1982-83), Philadelphia Philllies (1984), St. Louis Cardinals (1985), Detroit Tigers (1986), and the Montreal Expos (1987); Buzz Capra - New York Mets (1971-73) and Atlanta Braves (1974-77); Skip Pitlock - San Francisco Giants (1970) and Chicago White Sox (1974-75); and Bob Miller - Detroit Tigers (1953-56), Cincinnati Reds (1962) and New York Mets (1962). Book contributor D.C. Brod will also be on hand to sign books.

Monday, DECEMBER 29, 2008, 3-7 p.m.: Ralph's Cigars (1032 W. Taylor St., Chicago, IL, 60607, 312-829-0602). Special appearance by ex-Cub Gary "Sarge" Matthews. Contributors Don De Grazia, Julia Borcherts and Donald G. Evans will also be on hand to sign books.

Tuesday, DECEMBER 30, 2008, 7-10 p.m.: El Jardin Restaurant (3335 N. Clark St., Chicago, IL, 60657, 773-528-6775): Special guest appearances by Ronnie "Woo Woo" Wickers, Jerry Pritikin (aka The Bleacher Preacher)and Minnette Goodman and David, mother and brother of legendary singer and songwriter Steve Goodman ("Go Cubs Go", "A Dying Cub Fan's Last Request"). Contributors Don De Grazia, Mary Beth Hoerner, Randy Richardson and Donald G. Evans will also be on hand to sign books. Free nacho bar and drink specials!

SATURDAY, January 17, 2009, 9 a.m.-1 p.m.: The Centre of Elgin (100 Symphony Way, Elgin, IL, 60120,847-531-7000): We'll be there with hundreds of youngsters who will be registering for Little League. A portion of the sale of every book sold will be donated to the Elgin/South Elgin Little League programs. Former major leaguer Bob Miller will be on hand to sign books. Miller, who played for the Detroit Tigers (1953-56), the Cincinnati Reds(1962) and the original New York Mets (1962), remains the youngest pitcher to ever defeat the New YorkYankees, which he did at the age of 17. Appearance also by "Radio Ron" Walerowicz.

THURSDAY, January 22, 2009,5-9 p.m.: Oak Park Cigar (6311 Roosevelt Road, Berwyn, IL, 60402, 708-788-2442): A great place to hang out, talk sports, and, of course, smoke a quality cigar or two.

SATURDAY, January 24, 2009, 8 p.m.-5 a.m..: Windy City Story Slam Championships(Metro, 3730 North Clark Street, Chicago, IL 60613, 773-790-1726): Twelve monthly champions read or perform original works and the winner (determined by audience response) takes home the popular series' first championship belt. Also includes featured readings by Uptown Poetry Slam founder Marc Smith, American Skin author Don De Grazia, local poet-musician Sergio Mayora, Metro owner Joe Shanahan, Cubbie Blues editor Donald G. Evans and others. There will be a short film by Usama Alshiabi; live music by The Thin Man, Minneapolis Henrys and rap group BBU; and DJ sets by Shanahan, Eric Lab Rat and others.

SATURDAY, February 7, 2009, 1-3 p.m.: Read Between the Lynes (129 Van Buren Street, Woodstock, IL,60098 815-206-5967): Cubs fan extraordinaire Ronnie "Woo Woo" Wickers and several book contributors will be on hand to sign books. This beautiful bookstore is located on the historic Woodstock Square. Remember Groundhog Day? It was filmed in Woodstock. You can retrace the footsteps of longtime Cubs fan Bill Murray.

THURSDAY, February 12, 2009,4:30-5:45 p.m.: Association of Writers & Writing Programs (AWP) Conference (Chicago Hilton, 720 S. Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL, LakeHuron Room): It's a Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood!: Five Chicago Writers Mark Their Territory.Participants: John McNally (moderator), Stephanie Kuehnert, Billy Lombardo, Elizabeth Crane, Donald G. Evans (Cubbie Blues editor).

THURSDAY, February 19, 2009,6-8 p.m.: Lily Falls Gift Boutique (10 Douglas Avenue, Elgin, IL, 60124, 847-551-9006): A great little store on a quaint little street. Vicki, the store owner, will provide complimentary wine and hors d'oeuvres.

FRIDAY, February 20, 2009,6-9 p.m.: Rookies All-American Pub& Grill (2846 Bushwood Drive, Elgin, IL, 60120, 847-841-8459): It's a meeting of the Rons. "Radio" Ron Walerowicz and Ronnie "Woo Woo" Wickers will be on hand to greet area Cub fans. Both Ron and Ronnie are legendary Cub fans. Longtime Cub announcer Harry Caray called Woo Woo "Leather Lungs" for his ability to shout hour after hour without stop. He'll Woo Woo it up at Rookies, too, where they'll be serving 1/2 burgers for just $1. And if you're lucky enough to find a place to sit, you can watch sports on at least two or three TVs. With 26 sets, this place has become a hub for sporting events, including Rookies' first-ever book signing. "Elgin Today" host Jeff Myers will be there doing his spot-on Harry Caray impersonation. Don Evans, editor of Cubbie Blues, will also attend. Come in for a great burger, leave with a great baseball book.

SATURDAY, March 21, 2009, 3 p.m.:The Shawon-O-MeetUp:(Murphy's Bleachers, 3655 N. Sheffield, Chicago, IL, across from Wrigley Field).Join a band of Shawon-O-Meter supporters on Shawon Dunston's birthday as they collect signed petitions supporting Dave Cihla's candidacy to sing the "Seventh-Inning Stretch" this summer. We'll make plans on how to deliver the petitions to the Cubs while watching them battle the Sox in the preseason (3:05 p.m. start).

WEDNESDAY, March 25, 2009,7 p.m.:Fergie and Friends Celebrity Baseball Game and Autograph Show(HoHoKam Stadium, Mesa, AZ): Join us at spring trainingfor this 2nd annual charity event hosted by Cubs Hall of Famer Fergie Jenkins. We'll be sharing a table with photographerTammy Lechner("Our Team-Our Dream" and contributor to "Cubbie Blues").

FRIDAY, March 27, 2009:Hall of Fame Collectables, 3-8 p.m.(2753 E. Broadway Rd. #108A, Mesa, AZ 85204, 480-644-9518). PhotographerTammy Lechnerjoins "Cubbie Blues" editorDonald G. Evansfor a book signing.

SATURDAY, March 28, 2009:Al's Chicago Style Hot Dogs, 2-8 p.m.(1152 N. Power Rd. #105, Mesa, AZ 85205, 480-981-3647). Photographer Tammy Lechner joins "Cubbie Blues" editor Donald G. Evans for a book signing.

WEDNESDAY, April 1, 2009:Reading Under the Influence, 7-10 p.m.(Sheffield's, 3258 N. Sheffield Ave.). The theme isCubbie Blues,featuring readings and trivia games by contributors to the "Cubbie Blues: 100 Years of Waiting till Next Year" anthology, including Cubs' blogger extraordinaireRick Kaempfer, short story writerChristine Sneed(Best American Short Stories 2008, Other Voicesand more), author/playwrightMary Beth Hoerner("Atomic Honeymoon"), Windy City Story Slam founderBill Hillmann,Sheffield's ownerRic Hessand RUI'sJulia Borcherts.As always, they're in the back room at Sheffield's. There's a $3 cover.



Cubs Urn from Eternal ImageSUNDAY, April 5, 2009,2-7 p.m.: Cremating the Curse(Michael's Funeral Home, 800 S. Roselle Road, Schaumburg, IL 60193, 847-891-2900):Enough already. Curses, real or imagined, have followed the Cubs ever since their last World Series title in 1908. That was the year Fred Merkle committed his famous “boner,” and in so doing, according to some, cursed the ungracious and undeserving Cubs to their current status. Curses followed curses: the billy goat (1945), the black cat (1969), Bartman (2003). Enough already.

Our authentic cremating ceremony, held on the day before the Cubs' season opener in Houston, is meant to eradicate a century of curses. Why take any chances with 2009? Legendary comedianTom Dreesenwill don his Reverend collar to lead the irreverent ceremony. In his 40-year career,Dreesenhas opened for Frank Sinatra (13 years); been a frequent guest on late-night television; hosted theTonight Showand theLate, Late Show; co-authored a book with Tim Reid; written and performed a one-man play; and just about anything else a humble Harvey boy could possibly dream. SeeBill Zwecker talking about Dreesen and Cremating the Curse on CBS 2 Chicago.


Our cast of Cubby mourners includes ex-Cubs outfielderGene Hiser, former major leaguersBill Campbell, Skip PitlockandBob Miller, ex-Cubs Ball Girl (1986)Kathy Wolter(a.k.a. The Blonde), bestselling authorJames Finn Garner,One Bad CenturyhostRick Kaempfer, Cubs historianBrian Bernardoni, playwrightMary Beth Hoerner,Reading Under the Influenceco-founderJulia Borcherts,Windy City Story Slamfounder and hostBill Hillmann,Chicago Literary Scene ExaminercolumnistRobert Duffer,Cubbie BlueseditorDonald G. Evans, superfansRonnie “Woo Woo” Wickers,Shawon-O-Meter co-creator Dave Cihla, "Ivy Man" Ward Tannhauserand“Radio” RonWalerowicz, celebrated widowPat Brickhouse, and many others. The musical groupMGMdebuts its songCurse of the Cubbie Blues. A book signing will follow the ceremony.

All attendees get a Chicago-style hot dog courtesy ofRed Hot Chicagoand a Rally Box of chicken breast strips and fries courtesy ofLove Me Tenders, the Official Chicken of the Chicago Cubs. 


Once friends and relations have had their say, the cursed artifacts will be laid to rest in an official Cubbie coffin, and then handed over to a licensed funeral director, who will perform the cremation. The remains will be kept in a Chicago Cubs urn, donated, along with the space, byMichael Demnicki.


Join us after the ceremony for a post-cremation party atJohn Barleycorn, 1100 American Lane, Schaumburg.


For advance tickets, contact publisher George Rawlinson by phone 847-902-3664 or by email at g.rawlinson@sbcglobal.net. Tickets will also be sold at the door. A portion of all proceeds, as with allCubbie Bluessales, goes toChicago Baseball Cancer Charity.


SATURDAY, April 11, 2009, 2-4 p.m.:Centuries & Sleuths Bookstore(7419 W. Madison Street, Forest Park, IL, 60130, 708-771-7243): Book contributorsD.C. Brod, Robert Goldsborough andJames Finn Garnerwill be on hand to sign books, as will"Cubbie Blues" editorDonald G. Evans. Former major leaguerBob Millerwill also be there. Miller, who played for the Detroit Tigers (1953-56), the Cincinnati Reds(1962) and the original New York Mets (1962), remains the youngest pitcher to ever defeat the New YorkYankees, which he did at the age of 17.







MONDAY, APRIL 13, 2009: WXRT-93.1 FM Wrigley FieldOpening Day Party at Yak-Zie's(3710 North Clark Street, Chicago, IL): "Cubbie Blues" contributor and XRT's morning DJ Lin Brehmer hosts this annual party welcoming the Cubs back to Wrigley Field as they face the Houston Astros. Copies of "Cubbie Blues" will be given away as prizes by the XRT staff.


SATURDAY, April 18, 2009, 1-3 p.m.:The Bookstore(475 N. Main Street, Glen Ellyn, IL, 60137, 630-469-2891). Book contributors Dave Hoekstra, Rick Kaempfer, Donald G. Evans and Randy Richardson will be on hand to sign books.

Friday, May 1, 2009, 9 .m. (doors open at 8 p.m.): Windy City Story Slam's May Day Festival(Metro, 3730 N. Clark Street, Chicago).Don Evanstells a story about his summer job as a CTA "substation utility worker" as part of an evening celebrating Studs Terkel and Chicago's rich working class.Donna Seaman(Open Books and Booklist) will give a talk about Studs, and other participants will read from his masterful book "Working."

SATURDAY, May 2, 2009,11 a.m - 1p.m.:The Cliff Dwellers Club(200 S. Michigan Ave).: Cubbie Blues contributorsDavid Goodman,Julia Borcherts,Christine Sneed, Ric Hess, Don DeGrazia, Bill Hillmann, Julia BorchertsandDonald G. Evanswill meet with members of the prestigious non-profit organization. The discussion will be held at the Club's 22nd floor penthouse headquarters on Michigan Avenue and Adams Street, and will include representatives from SABR (Society for American Baseball Research) and the Old Timers Baseball Association of Chicago. The Cliff Dwellers was founded more than 100 years ago, and has consistently been a major force in recognizing, supporting, and championing the fine and performing arts in Chicago.

Sunday, May 3, 2009, 2-5 p.m.: Center City Book Fair(Elgin Public House, 219, E. Chicago Street).Acclaimed journalist and radio personalityRick Kogantakes center stage at the Center City Book Fair along with award-winning authors and a former Chicago Cubs ball girl. The book fair, part of Elgin's celebration of Preservation Month, aims to promote reading, encourage writing, and heighten an awareness of literary arts in Elgin's multicultural community. Joining Kogan will be former Chicago Cubs ball girl Kathy Wolter, photojournalistCharles Osgood, and authorsDon DeGrazia,D.C. Brod,Beckie ButcherandDonald G. Evans. The Center City Book Fair is free and open to the public. Complimentary hors d'oeuvres will be served.

Saturday, May 16, 2009, 1:30 p.m.:Ann Arbor Book Festival(Kalamazoo Stage, Michigan League).Cubbie Blues editorDon Evansjoins John Bacon (author ofBo's Lasting Lessons),AngeliqueChengelis(Detroit Newssportswriter) andDrew Sharp(Detroit Free Press sports columnist) in a panel discussion on sports in the United States.For writers, sports is a broad area that covers everything from fly-fishing to gambling in sports to biographies of great athletes. Keeping up with the daily information is challenging. Panelists will discuss their experiences in this area in a lively conversation.

Thursday, May 21, 2009, 7 p.m.:Oak Park Public Library(Main Library, 2nd Floor, Veterans Room, 834 Lake Street, Oak Park). "Cubbie Blues" editorDonald G. Evansserves as moderator for a panel of contributing writers to the book, includingDon De Grazia,James Finn Garner,Robert GoldsboroughandRick Kaempfer, who will give voice to the essence of being a Cubs fan.

SATURDAY, 1 p.m.:Printers Row Literary Festival(Harold Washington Library Center, Multi-Purpose Room, 400 South State Street, Chicago).Cubbie BlueseditorDon Evansmoderates a discussion about what makes some sports-themed work literature while other work is more disposable. The All-Star panel includesCubbie BluescontributorsSara Paretsky(V.I. Warshawski mysteries),James Finn Garner(Politically Correctseries and Bardball.com) andStuart Shea(Wrigley Field: The Unauthorized Biography), along withGary Moore(Playing with the Enemy) andJim McArdle(Living the Dream). This is a FREE event but you must register in advance in order to gain entry. To obtain free tickets,sign up at the Printers Row Lit Fest website.

SATURDAY, JUNE 6, 10 a.m. - noon: Printers Row Lit Fest(Dearborn & Polk streets, Chicago). ContributorRandy Richardsonsigns copies ofCubbie Bluesat the Chicago Writers Association tent GG1 (on Polk near the Kids Corner Stage).

SUNDAY, JUNE 7, 10 a.m. - noon:Printers Row Lit Fest(Dearborn & Polk streets, Chicago).Can't Miss Press publisherGeorge Rawlinsonsigns copies ofCubbie Bluesat the Chicago Writers Association tent GG1 (on Pok near the Kids Corner Stage).